ALBERTA

Alberta man responsible for fatal crash drops appeals of conviction, sentence

07/20/2015 10:55 EDT | Updated 07/20/2016 05:59 EDT
BEAUMONT, Alta. - A drunk driver found guilty of manslaughter for killing three young men when his pickup truck with its gas pedal to the floor plowed through their car at 199 kilometres an hour has dropped an appeal of his conviction and sentence.

Jonathan Pratt had a blood alcohol level nearly three times the legal limit when rescue crews found him underneath his mangled Dodge Ram near Beaumont, just southeast of Edmonton, in November 2011.

Pratt, who was also convicted of impaired driving causing death, was sentenced to eight years in prison and a life-time driving ban.

Sheri Arsenault, who lost her son Bradley in the collision, says Pratt’s decision to accept the consequences of his actions comes as a relief.

She says that deep down, she knew he didn't have the legal grounds for an appeal but says the matter has been troubling.

Arsenault says the sentence set a good precedent for the next time something like this happens.

“It was his first offence — he had never been caught before. So that will aid prosecutors going forward with aiming for a very good sentence for impaired drivers causing death.”

The other two young men who had been with her son, Kole Novak, 18, and Thaddeus Lake, 22, had been on their way home from nearby Leduc.

The trio had been in the lounge that night and court heard either Arsenault or Lake had been driving the car.

Toxicology tests showed Arsenault had some marijuana and a small amount of alcohol in his system and Lake was too drunk to drive, but the judge ruled those facts were irrelevant and said the young men had done nothing to cause the crash.

Pratt, 30, suffered a broken leg and head injury and spent the next six weeks in hospital.

(CHED)

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